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Q & A on the NASCIO State CIO Survey

This year NASCIO and Grant Thorton put together the 2022 State CIO Survey, which benchmarks some exciting trends post-pandemic. Most of our clients are local agencies, but there are enough similarities to make reviewing this document of interest. We thought it would make for exciting reading!

What are CIOs' top three critical success factors (key traits)?

Strategist, communicator, and relationship manager. The same responses were noted in 2018, but the order was different as the communicator led the key traits. Overall, IT leaders should polish their relationship-building skills regarding workplace support (it’s critical to keep staff happy) and partnering with other agencies.

We’re hearing about workforce issues in the private sector. How does the public sector fare?

The workforce remains worrisome. Reskilling to match modern IT operations needs to be a priority, openness to remote work and building a talent pipeline are two additional issues. We’re hearing similar from our local agency’s IT leaders. It’s interesting how IT works in the public, and private sectors continue to become more similar.

What are the top practices of IT departments that will continue post-pandemic?

The #1 response is providing/improving/extending citizen services. “The 2020 and 2021 State CIO Surveys examined the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic as a driver for digital services. State CIOs reported that they were singularly focused on ensuring citizens and users could continue to interact with government during the pandemic.” This is the same for local agencies. We also think dealing with legacy is always an issue with agencies of all sizes. As soon as you deploy a system, the clock starts ticking. #2 is the modernization of legacy systems. #3 broadband expansion. #4 offering remote work options. Recently we attended the Municipal Information Association Conference (MISAC). We saw a lot of focus on citizen services, integration between business systems, and revisiting their choice of a content management system.

How are agencies approaching the workforce, as mentioned above issues?

Overall, CIOs are suggesting the rethinking of the IT workforce. This includes reimaging roles, titles, and salaries, and of course, reskilling. We don’t think that changes for local agencies except the headcount is lesser, so achieving these goals may be easier in some ways.

Do you recommend that we download and read the report?

Yes, we do. Here’s the link again. We hope it is helpful! There’s some enlightening detail, especially regarding meeting public expectations for digital services.

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